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Don't lose focus, says Sivivatu

Rashneel Kumar
Friday, June 14, 2013

FORMER All Blacks winger Sitiveni Sivivatu believes the Flying Fijians need to work on their concentration to perform better at the international level.

Sivivatu, who featured for the Classic All Blacks in the Centennial match against the national side on Wednesday night, said Fiji needed to maintain focus throughout the 80 minutes game to overcome tougher opponents.

Against the Classic All Blacks, the Inoke Male-coached Fiji showed lapses of concentration allowing the team of former All Blacks to bounce back and take a 14-6 lead at the break.

The Flying Fijians managed to stage a dramatic comeback in the second spell to beat the visitors 33-14 at the ANZ Stadium in Suva.

"They will need to concentrate well from the start of the game. I think they were not focused and started getting into the game in the second half," said the 31-year-old Sivivatu, who plays for Clermont in French Top 14 competition said.

"Playing against bigger teams, they cannot afford a lapse in concentration. They have to be mindful of how they start."

However, Classic All Blacks skipper Justin Marshall was impressed with the smart rugby played by the Fijians.

He added Fiji was good in the set-piece play, especially with its scrum and lineouts.

"We knew they have been playing well and they are always powerful but when you put them under pressure, you force some turnover balls and that's where you get a chance to score against them," Marshall said.

"In the first half we did that but they played equally intelligent rugby in the second half and showed some good leadership on the field."

Coach Male said the Classic All Blacks game was a good learning experience for the team ahead of the remainder of the Pacific Nations Cup (PNC) competition which will be held next week in Japan.

He remains optimistic of their chances of clinching the first-ever PNC title despite the 18-20 loss to Canada last week.

"The aim this year is to win the PNC and that's why we have brought Europe-based players who will be featuring for us in our remaining matches," Male said.

"We have two games remaining against USA and Tonga and hopefully we beat them with bonus point to win the tournament."

The Flying Fijians will leave for Japan tomorrow morning.





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